SPCA joining scheme to sterilise stray cats

A national sterilisation programme to reduce the stray cat population in Singapore will have a new partner from next week - the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA), it said yesterday.

With SPCA coming on board from Monday, caregivers of stray cats in HDB estates will have anotheroption if they choose to get their animal charges sterilised.

The sterilisation initiative was rolled out nationwide by the Cat Welfare Society and the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) in May last year.

Under it, volunteers can take strays from HDB estates to selected veterinary clinics to get them sterilised and micro-chipped for free. The cost is borne equally between AVA and either the SPCA or Cat Welfare Society.

It typically costs between $30 and $60 to neuter a cat, and another $20 to microchip it.

The SPCA said the programme will make caregivers more accountable for the animals in their care, since each cat sterilised under the scheme will be given a microchip number tagged to its caregiver.

This will make it easier for SPCA to look for the caregiver under certain situations, such as if the cat has been injured and requires treatment, said SPCA executive director Corinne Fong.

She added that the programme will offer the animal welfare group the opportunity to work more closely with community cat feeders in their efforts to trap, neuter and release the animals.

Cat Welfare Society vice-president Veron Lau said the group sterilised 4,749 cats last year, although less than 20 per cent of the sterilisations were undertaken as part of the programme.

She said: "The number of stray cats in HDB estates has more or less stabilised."


This article was first published on May 27, 2015.
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